Dermatology Forum
This expert forum is not accepting new questions. Please post your question in one of our medical support communities.
Avatar universal

Skin peeling

I got small bumps on my hands and feet. My palms got red. They were itching and burning. Then the skin on my hands and feet started peeling. The skin is peeling thickly. This condition has lasted for a couple of weeks so far. I have included some pictures for your review.




8 Responses
242489 tn?1210500813
If this began recently (it's called "desquamation"), it may be an aftermath of a strep infection, such as a strep throat.  A few weeks after a strep infection, some people get peeling that looks like yours.  It runs its course and heals without problems.  No special treatment is necessary, or available.  I suggest you ask a skin doctor to have a look if this persist more than 2 more weeks.


Dr. Rockoff
Avatar universal
Dr. Rockoff,

I have the same condition on my hand and fingers as this gentleman does, but not on the feet.  My PCP said it was Dermatitis and prescribed Elidel 1% for night time, and a lotion for the day (4x).  I got the medications last week, but my skin on my hands and fingers is still peeling. I develope small blister like bubles especially after showering, but when I peel the skin no liquid comes out.  I have not been sick lately, no strep throat? Is my PCP on the right track with diagnosing Dermatitis? This has been going on for a few weeks now.

Thank You
Avatar universal
i have almost the same thing. like three weeks ago i had small little see through bumps in my fingers. it would itch alot i want to the doctor and she told me that it was the change of weather and she gave me a cream to wear twice a day. after a week i my skin started peeling from the point of my middle finger to the end of the finger. am not sure why its doing that. what can it be? i skin is lighter and red. on my finger tips i have no finer print its just red an smooth and it hurts. do you think it will go away or should i try going to a different doctor. i just hope it stops peeling because my hand look really bad.
Avatar universal
I believe I have this same problem (White, Male, 29).
-affects hands only, ~70% of the time only the right hand, usually finger tips or palm/thumb area, top of hands are unaffected.
-small colourless bubbles, sometimes various degrees of itching.
-several days after the bubbles are noticed the skin begins to peel, and proceeds to peel outward for an unknown length of time.
-with the outer skin gone, the skin becomes red, easily irritated or damaged, sometimes painful for this reason.
-non-continuous duration, approximately 8 years, first appearance half way through residence at a university, January-April (winter season in this location, generally cold)

It has never been annoying enough to see a doctor, though my hand would have to be actually bleeding before I'd consider that.. :/

could it be dyshidrotic eczema?

I suspect I've had minor cases of this on my feet, I just never noticed because it wasn't painful...

Extra Information/Causes:
-roomate had 'Mono' before first appearance.
-no sexual contact of any kind before first appearance.
-Vaseline Dry Skin Lotion helps skin from becoming painful, use in combination with bandaids is helpful as soon as the bubbles appear, until skin returns to normal.
-bad eating habits/insufficient nutrients feeding the problem?
-scratching definitely makes it much worse.. put tape, glue anything on it to stop yourself from scratching it LOL
-excess use of soap as a cause?
-excess use of computer keyboard & mouse as a cause? (note I use my right hand on the mouse)

Recent event, applying lotion and a bandaid upon discovery of bubbles on fingertip area leads to hardening of the bubbled skin and slight discolouration.. yellowish appearance.. followed by peeling of the affected area.. I don't think it's going to spread in this case.. which is unusual..

I wanted to post as much information here int he hopes of finding a trend.. :)

Avatar universal
Im so glad i found this thread because im experiencing the same exact symptoms now. The skin around the end of my fingers will start by itching, turnig red, then swelling.  Swelling so much that my skin hardens and its very painful to try to bend them at the joints because of pain and the sevre brusing it does to the skin. It only affects the part of the finger from the furtherst joint up to the tip, and only certain ones. On my left hand my index and thumb, on my right index, middle, and pinkie.  After about 3 days swelling will subside and skin will begin to peel leaving bright red soft skin that is senstive to touch.  Its so hard to get into a specialist to take a look,, and usually by the time i have an appointment scheduled it goes away so they have nothing to look at. Please help me in finding some relief for this nagging problem that causes me to lose sleep.
Avatar universal

To clarify:

- My previous post was aimed at the original question.
- Furthermore, the areas of the body that become painfully red and later peel varies from person to person.
- Check your energy/diet supplements for Ephedra and your cold/allergy medicines for PseudoEphedrine.

Avatar universal
If this started out as a rather sudden painful red inflammation that affected the groin(that results in an appearance that may get misdiagnosed as jock itch), as well as the soles of the feet, the hands, the knees and the elbows (to a lesser extent) that felt hot and quite unbearable for about a day, then a few days later resulted in one layer of skin covering the affected areas to start pealing off in surprisingly large sheets, it may have been an allergic reaction to ephedra or pseudoephedrine. (or possibly another drug)

Ephedra is in a lot of diet and energy supplements.  Pseudoephedrine is in a lot of cold and nasal decongestants.  

In normally takes about 12-24 hours for the symptoms to appear, painfully inflamed red skin that feels warm, thick and stiff.  2-3 days later the pain subsides and the skin starts to painlessly peal away. It may take up to a month or more for all the damaged skin to shed.

If this sounds like it, avoid products that contain Ephedra and/or Pseudoephedrine.  Not sure what can be done at the onset, perhaps some anti-inflammatory topical can be applied or maybe even ice packs.  

There are some studies on this out there.  Perform an internet search on(they don't provide much help):

nonpigmenting fixed drug eruption due to pseudoephedrine


well circumscribed erythema ephedra



Good luck!
Avatar universal
I have been having this problem for at least 10 or more years, since I was 18.  The peeling skin all occur on the top of my index fingers and thumb.  It has gotten really bad and started to bleed, then heal, turns pink, and smooth with no fingerprints either.  Just when I think my finger will fall off, it starts to clear up.  It happens all the time!  So I just tell myself to not worry about it now.  

At 21, I went to see the dermatologist, but all the lotions he gave me did not help.  So I haven't gone since.  I have tried some home remedies like crushing garlic and soaking my fingers in it.  It really stings!  But did not help.  I also tried soaking it in hydrogen peroxide and watch it fizz until my skin turned white.  This method did not sting as much, but didn't prove to help so I stopped.

I also wonder if it's a food allergy or weather related.  Since lately we had a batch of fresh tomatoes, and I ate about 3 or 4 of them per day for about a week.  And now my fingers are peeling.  I also think it could be stress related since it the worst symptoms have been when I am going thru some major life changes.  Such as financial crisis, loss of family members, and other stressful times.  But I read that UV therapy would help, but all I can afford is to go outside more and soak in the sun.  I think that helps because this problem is worst in winter time.    

The difference is that at the beginning of spring this year, I've had little tiny blisters too.  They were not itchy at first and just go away on their own.  They just turn dry and a new skin appears.  But lately they are started to get a little itchy.  The little blisters look like clusters and as tiny as the head of a quilting pin needle.   I poked one of them and saw it was clear.

I am now keeping a medical journal, so that when I can afford to see the Doctor I will have more info.

I know this condition is not contagious since no one in my immediate family or friends has this condition.  I hope myself or someone will find some answers and put an end to this annoyance.
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Learn to identify and prevent bites from summer’s most common pests.
Doctors argue for legislation to curb this dangerous teen trend in the latest Missouri Medicine report.
10 ways to keep your skin healthy all winter long
How to get rid of lumpy fat on your arms, hips, thighs and bottom
Diet “do’s” and “don’ts” for healthy, radiant skin.
Images of rashes caused by common skin conditions